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Thread: If figure skaters were speed skaters...

  1. #1

    If figure skaters were speed skaters...

    Bret Hedican is one of the fastest skaters in the National Hockey League. I have read that he can outpace his wife in a skating race if it's short enough, say one length of the rink. But that in a longer race, four or five lengths, Kristi can catch up and win.

    I assume that top figure skaters sometimes race each other just for fun. Who do you think would be the fastest among the ladies' and the men's elite skaters?


  2. #2

    Re: If figure skaters were speed skaters...

    For ladies, Fumie

    For Men, Alexander Abt


  3. #3

    Re: If figure skaters were speed skaters...

    <blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>For Men, Alexander Abt[/quote]

    Without a doubt!

  4. #4
    Custom Title
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    Jan 2005

    Re: If figure skaters were speed skaters...

    Based on what I saw from TV screen at 2003 world. I would say Michelle definitely can race to Fummie.

    Check the tape of warmup before long. The first two skaters skated out the gate are Michelle and Fummie in speed skating style. They looks like at the same speed and properly MK a little fast than Fummie. Fummie may be faster than Michelle in backward stroking. But forward stroking, which is the case of speed skating, I think Michelle may have the edge.

    There is a reason why Michelle use a lot forward stroking in her programs while others mostly backward stroking.

  5. #5

    Re: If figure skaters were speed skaters...

    Funny that some believe Fumie is the fastest, but it's Irina who is usually given that title by almost everyone.(commentators,skating fans and etc).

    Men= Alexandra Abt.

  6. #6

    Re: If figure skaters were speed skaters...

    I always felt that Irina did a lot of skating backwards which is easier to do. I haven't paid attention lately, so I don't know if she has improved that or not.

    I also think that Irina's (and even Sarah's) style of skating makes it look like they are working harder and it translates as more speed. I have heard this over and over from a lot of people especially when watching skating on tv.

    The problem with thinking that harder = faster/better is that the better skaters are actually more efficient with their stroking. They get more flow from each stroke so they don't have to work as hard (ie. do as many crossovers) to achieve the same speed.

    I'm basing a lot of my theory on a comparison to my skating coach. I was definitely working hard/churning away, but not getting anywhere near as fast or far as she did. Her crossovers were effortless compared to me.

    Now if a skater is doing a lot of churning through crossovers while using efficient strokes at the same time, I'm staying out of their way!

  7. #7
    berthes ghost

    Re: If figure skaters were speed skaters...

    ...they'd get a lot more respect from Speedy! :lol:

    As to who could beat a hockey player: I think that Boitano gets a lot of millage out of every stroke, economy of motion kind of thing that I imagine would translate into great speed skating.

  8. #8

    Re: If figure skaters were speed skaters...

    It's funny, but before going to Worlds this year, I had no idea how fast someone like Michelle skated. I could not get over how fast she was at practices, when she would first come out on the ice. Several times I was in the front row as she whizzed by, and I was just astounded with her speed. I also agree about Fumie. Since Irina wasn't there, I can't know for sure ... but my guess is she would be fast as well.

  9. #9

    Re: If figure skaters were speed skaters...

    Mzheng brings up a good point: Would they race with forward or back stroking? OTOH, watching skaters live, the ones with great speed and power seem to have it throughout everything they do. It's as if once they get up to top speed, through edging, use of shifts of weight, and a few forward or back strokes ever once in a while, they maintain their speed throughout the program.

    I agree with Berthes Ghost that Brian Boitano is among the fastest skaters I've ever seen. I haven't seen him live since '00, so perhaps he's not as fast as he used to be, but especially in the mid to late '90s, Brian had a quality of glide to his skating that I've never seen on any other skater. It was as if he had found a way to reduce the friction between the blade and the ice and skated a few milimeters off the ice. Before I saw Brian skate live for the first time in '93, from TV I thought he was rather stiff as a skater. But when I saw him live, not only did he NOT look stiff, his speed and glide across the ice just took my breath away. And this was after watching great high speed skaters like Gordeeva and Grinkov (not taking anything away from them, they were astounding too).

    If we're talking overall speed (I'd measure them with a speed gun several times a minute as they skated a program), my list would be:
    --Brian Boitano, Ilia Kulik
    --Gordeeva and Grinkov, Bechke and Petrov
    --Grishuk and Platov, Anissina and Peizerat
    --Irina Slutskaya, Lucinda Ruh

  10. #10

    How soon do you forget?

    Remember Oksana Baiul, she has speed. At times, I think she might do a Green Bay Packer, ie. flew over the boards b/c she is so fast.

  11. #11


    Laetitia Hubert and Nicole Bobek, anyone?

  12. #12

    Re: speed

    Ladies--Michelle, Irina and Fumie are the fastest.
    Men--Alexander Abt and Elvis.

  13. #13

    Re: Skaters with Speed

    Very true about Oksana's speed, at least from '94 to '96 for sure and up and down from '96 to '98. She is still the fastest ladies singles skater I've ever seen; I just don't know if she can still skate that fast. So I didn't include her here, but I did on another post. So no, we don't necessarily forget if we don't include it in our posts:D

  14. #14


    So we agree on something

    Really, glad to know that you too love Oksana

  15. #15

    Re: rgirl

    if you want speed, i would let one of the ice dancers do it. those skaters have SPEED. or gordeeva and grinkov.

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